England's Five Year Climate Forecast Cycle

Guest post by Steven Goddard

(UK Pic Photo: NASA/GSFC, MODIS Rapid Response)

England, Scotland and Wales completely covered in snow,  January, 2010

In my last article, I discussed the current theory that global warming is going to turn England into a tropical paradise.  And ten years ago we were told by The Met Office that “Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past.”  But five years ago the theory was that global warming will turn England into a frozen wasteland.

THE Gulf Stream currents that give Britain its mild climate have weakened dramatically, offering the first firm scientific evidence of a slowdown that threatens the country with temperatures as cold as Canada’s.

The Atlantic Ocean “conveyor belt” that carries warm water north from the tropics has weakened by 30 per cent in 12 years, scientists have discovered. The findings, from the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton, give the strongest indication yet that Europe’s central heating system is breaking down under the impact of global warming.

Scientists have long predicted that melting ice caps could disrupt the currents that keep Britain at least 5C (40F) warmer than it should be, but the new research suggests that this is already under way. It points to a cooling of 1C over the next decade or two, and an even deeper freeze could follow if the Gulf Stream system were to shut down altogether.

The British Isles lie on the same latitude as Labrador on the East Coast of Canada, and are protected from a similarly icy climate by the Atlantic conveyor belt, which carries a million billion watts of heat. Although oceanographers still think it unlikely that the currents will stop completely, this could reduce average temperatures by between 4C and 6C in as little as 20 years, far outweighing any increase predicted as a result of global warming.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article598464.ece

What the scientists were saying is that the melting Arctic is going to flood the North Atlantic with cold fresh water, and will slow down the Gulf Stream.  The BBC explained it like this :

Global Warming will cause the Greenland ice cap to melt which, when combined with increased rainfall at high latitudes, will potentially disrupt the THC by adding freshwater and decreasing sea water salinity in the North Atlantic…. Winters would be much colder than now “along the lines of the winter of 1962-1963” suggests Jenkins, with summers being cooler and shorter. This would have many social implications including (not surprisingly!) transport and agriculture. 3-4°C may not sound much, but the average air temperature difference between the ‘Medieval Warm Period’ when vineyards thrived in southern England and the ‘Little Ice Age’ when the River Thames regularly froze over was only 1-2°C.

http://img.thesun.co.uk/multimedia/archive/00730/SNN1112BB_666_730445a.jpg

Sun photo : English cars buried in global warming

The Guardian explained it like this:

“Based on climate simulations we think that UK winters would be around 5-10C colder on average if the Gulf Stream shut down,” says Michael Vellinga, of the Met Office’s Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research. For those who can remember back that far, this would make the average UK winter feel more like 1963, when February temperatures hovered around -5 C.

So here is the climate cycle timeline:

  • 2000 – Snowfalls are a thing of the past in Britain
  • 2005 – Britain to turn into a frozen wasteland
  • 2010 – Britain to become a tropical paradise like Portugal

Climate science in England shows a statistically significant cycle, alternating between tropical forecasts and ice age forecasts every five years.

What do readers think?

http://i.telegraph.co.uk/telegraph/multimedia/archive/01403/rain_london_1403716c.jpg

Telegraph Image

England’s Five Year Climate Forecast Cycle

England, Scotland and Wales completely covered in snow,  January, 2010

In my last article, I discussed the current theory that global warming is going to turn England into a tropical paradise.  And ten years ago we were told by The Met Office that “Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past.”  But five years ago the theory was that global warming will turn England into a frozen wasteland.

THE Gulf Stream currents that give Britain its mild climate have weakened dramatically, offering the first firm scientific evidence of a slowdown that threatens the country with temperatures as cold as Canada’s.

The Atlantic Ocean “conveyor belt” that carries warm water north from the tropics has weakened by 30 per cent in 12 years, scientists have discovered. The findings, from the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton, give the strongest indication yet that Europe’s central heating system is breaking down under the impact of global warming.

Scientists have long predicted that melting ice caps could disrupt the currents that keep Britain at least 5C (40F) warmer than it should be, but the new research suggests that this is already under way. It points to a cooling of 1C over the next decade or two, and an even deeper freeze could follow if the Gulf Stream system were to shut down altogether.

The British Isles lie on the same latitude as Labrador on the East Coast of Canada, and are protected from a similarly icy climate by the Atlantic conveyor belt, which carries a million billion watts of heat. Although oceanographers still think it unlikely that the currents will stop completely, this could reduce average temperatures by between 4C and 6C in as little as 20 years, far outweighing any increase predicted as a result of global warming.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article598464.ece

What the scientists were saying is that the melting Arctic is going to flood the North Atlantic with cold fresh water, and will slow down the Gulf Stream.  The BBC explained it like this :

Global Warming will cause the Greenland ice cap to melt which, when combined with increased rainfall at high latitudes, will potentially disrupt the THC by adding freshwater and decreasing sea water salinity in the North Atlantic…. Winters would be much colder than now “along the lines of the winter of 1962-1963” suggests Jenkins, with summers being cooler and shorter. This would have many social implications including (not surprisingly!) transport and agriculture. 3-4°C may not sound much, but the average air temperature difference between the ‘Medieval Warm Period’ when vineyards thrived in southern England and the ‘Little Ice Age’ when the River Thames regularly froze over was only 1-2°C.

Sun photo : English cars buried in global warming

The Guardian explained it like this:

“Based on climate simulations we think that UK winters would be around 5-10C colder on average if the Gulf Stream shut down,” says Michael Vellinga, of the Met Office’s Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research. For those who can remember back that far, this would make the average UK winter feel more like 1963, when February temperatures hovered around -5 C.

So here is the climate cycle timeline:

2000 – Snowfalls are a thing of the past in Britain

2005 – Britain to turn into a frozen wasteland

2010 – Britain to become a tropical paradise like Portugal

Climate science in England shows a statistically significant cycle, alternating between tropical forecasts and ice age forecasts every five years.

What do readers think?

1.  Ice age for the UK

2.  Tropical paradise for the UK

3.  Just the usual cold, rainy mess

Telegraph Image

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UK Sceptic

Regardless of whether or not we are going to freeze or fry, the idiots in charge and the wannbe be idiots in charge are still hell bent on destroying the UK’s energy generating capacity. We are seriously in danger of seeing the lights go out in the near future.
Government don’t listen to the “experts” any more than we do unless there’s a reason for them to pay attention – like the carbon credits scam and the “sustainable energy” scam. At least some common sense seems to be prevailing in France and Germany. Let’s hope it’s contagious…

NS

Possibly linked to the greater government funding cyclical current? Known to keep certain areas of Britain in up to 45% more useless bureaucrats than normal.

Al Gore's Holy Hologram

Bring on the tropical weather…but this is Britain – land of crap weather and the most elitist and deceptive politicians in the world. The first will never change and the second needs a modernist Cromwell.

R. de Haan
Willis Eschenbach

Probably worth noting that the Meridional Overturning current is not shutting down

kwik

Voodoo.

Peter Miller

The Atlantic Conveyor Belt is a really scary subject, especially for those living in north western Europe. We know what it is and we can measure it, but no one – with the obvious exceptions of Gore and Patchi – understands what makes it tick and why it strengthens and weakens for no apparent reason.
This post brings up the subject of Arctic Ocean salinity and consequential extent of the Arctic ice cap.
School boy science correctly tells us that the more salty the oceans, the lower will be the temperature at which it freezes and, of course, vice versa.
In Canada and Russia, several of the great Arctic rivers have been dammed and much of their fresh water is now pumped southwards for industrial and agricultural purposes. So – I have no idea about the amount – much less fresh water is now entering the Arctic than say 50 years ago. This means salinity levels have been rising, which should have a negative affect on the size of the Arctic ice cap, which apparently is exactly what has happened over the past 50 years.
Does this fit the AGW argument? Or is AGW just about carbon dioxide?
We know the Antarctic ice cap has been increasing slowly, but the Arctic ice cap has decreased in size. Why the difference? Logic indicates this is all to do with relative ocean salinity levels – decreasing in the Arctic, static in Antarctica – this makes much more scientific sense than rising carbon dioxide levels.
Then again, there is this problem to consider: a melting Arctic ice cap – if it occurs/continues – will mean greater evaporation and therefore greater snowfall in the region, meaning the Greenland ice cap will consequently thicken.
If the Greenland ice cap thickens, then this (hydrostatic pressure??) will presumably cause the glacier flow from the interior to the oceans to increase.
The bottom line is that – as illustrated in the forecasts above – nobody has a clue about what’s going to happen or how to model it.
The fact remains however, the future machinations of the Atlantic Conveyor Belt is the only really scary subject in climate science which should concern anyone living in NW Europe.

Gixxerboy

Yes, very droll. Prefer the science. Satire has it’s place but it is out there amongst the humourless drones who spout AGW as an accepted fact.

Nice aricle Steve. I fear I am getting a sense of deja vu all over again, as Yogi bear is reputed to have said.
This 1907 newspaper cutting reports that the gulf stream is cooling and slowing
http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?_r=1&res=9903E2DF173EE233A25751C2A9669D946697D6CF
This was prior to the sinking of the Titanic in 1912 from icebergs that were much farther south than usual, and was the precursor to the start of the 1917-1940 warm period in the arctic. Something similar seems to have happened around 1820 as well.
The workings of the Gulf stream were described in this British Pathe News reel (linked below) which would have been shown in 1936-during this extreme warm period which bore many similarities to today. If we can forget recorded incidents that happened only within peoples lifetime, what hope is there of pointing out other warming incidents in the more distant past?
http://www.britishpathe.com/record.php?id=10775
This news reel also includes details of an American plan that would have diverted the Gulf Stream away from the UK!
Look out for the graphics at the end which manages to mix Penguins and the North Pole
Tonyb

The Gulf stream being the main mild climate driver for Western Europe is a myth, that has been debunked 10 years ago.
6000 years back, Greenland had much less ice than today, Sahara was covered by savanna, Siberian summers were warmer by 3-7C and Siberian forests extended all the way up to North Arctic Ocean. Is there any proof that British isles experienced extremely cold climate at the same time? If not, where is the sense in the claims above, except “but our models show”?

Patrick Davis

Actually, I do rather miss the cold winters of England, not the rain you can keep that (Mind you, Southern Ireland was worse, 3 months of drizzle every day, every winter, thanks to that thing from the Gulf that proves AGW is real because there are “Palm” trees growing in Torquay, Cornwall, y’know, the English Riviera.
Cold and snow are OK as I used to sit in a country pub, with a pint of winter brew in front of a roaring open fire. Toasty!

Stacey

The sun is bright the sky is blue on my graph.
But someone told me it’s raining outside.
Apologies to Buddy Holly

Peter Miller

Apologies
Last post: re ocean salinity levels, should read increasing, not decreasing, in the Arctic

The ghost of Big Jim Cooley

Steve, I usually like your pieces, but you’re not doing a good job for tourism OR THE TRUTH with your poll which says, “Just the usual cold, rainy mess”. At times we do have some miserable days, or even weeks, but the weather here in England is fantastically changeable because of our geographical location. We can have hot summers (and we may well have one this year) which have put temps higher than Greece and Spain for a week or so. Our winters are usually fairly mild affairs. Lots of Americans still think we have fog here! The truth is that it pretty much died out in the late 1970s. I haven’t seen ‘London Town’ in fog for almost three decades now. As I sitting typing this, it’s 10 deg c outside, lovely and sunny, and yet it’s the end of March (when the average England March temp is 6.7 deg c).
So come on Steve (am I right in thinking you’re a Brit?), ditch the tired old cliche, the UK has really good weather – and a good tourist industry which is important to us!

KimW

I live in the temperate climate of the North Island of New Zealand. Quote ” … average air temperature difference between the ‘Medieval Warm Period’ when vineyards thrived in southern England and the ‘Little Ice Age’ when the River Thames regularly froze over was only 1-2°C.” Unquote. I can move North about 150 Km and get a local microclimate 2 degrees C warmer, or I can move to the South Island and get colder by the same amount. Odd, I have not noted vast changes in the climate. Could it be that the Met Office is raving, barking mad?.
NZ is moving into winter and my three grapevines are a spreading green monster along my property fence and the grapes look luscious. Go for it I say.

Oldseadog

Looking at this and the previous two threads, have I missed something?
Is it the 1st. of April already?

The ghost of Big Jim Cooley

We have a promise of 13 deg c today (in North London) – double the usual average March temp.

Kate

Question: What do anti-air travel activists do when they want to talk about “climate change”?
Answer: They fly from London to Bolivia.
The latest bunch of global warming hypocrites have their hour of fame in the Mail on Sunday:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1261251/Activists-jet-12-000-miles–climate-meeting.html
***************************************************************************
Activists jet 12,000 miles – to climate change meeting
Jason Lewis
27th March 2010
Climate change activists opposed to air travel are travelling to a conference in South America…by plane.
Campaigners from Climate Camp — who helped blockade Heathrow at the height of the summer holidays in 2007 — face claims of hypocrisy having decided to send two members to an international meeting in Bolivia to discuss ‘transnational protests’ against climate change.
The 12,000-mile round trip to the Climate Change and Mother Earth’s Rights conference next month involves changing planes at least twice. The flights will generate about eight tons of carbon dioxide greenhouse gases.
The money for their tickets — at least £1,200 for an economy fare — is being paid for by donations to Climate Camp from people opposed to flying and airport expansion.
One of the campaigners making the trip is Agnes Szafranowska. Ms Szafranowska, a Canadian who now lives in London, organises Climate Camp workshops and was involved in the “Great Climate Swoop” on Ratcliffe power station in Nottingham last October.
Police arrested ten people before the protest began on suspicion of conspiracy to cause criminal damage. Some 1,000 people took part, and security fencing around the plant was pulled down. Police made 56 arrests and a number of people were injured, including one policeman who had to be airlifted to hospital.
Ms Szafranowska failed to answer questions sent to her by email, other than to say that Climate Camp were preparing a statement.
The group’s Press officer did not return calls.

John Bowman

I was born and lived in England for 49 years. (I now live in France in what without past global warming would be a glacier.) The only things predictable about England’s “weather is not climate” were, we got a lot of it, and its unpredictability. Long before Climatebotherers invented Globalwarmism, I observed long, parched, hot Summers; freezing, long, snow-covered Winters; delightful warm Springtimes; blustery wet Autumns and all points in between.
We watched the evening weather forecast for amusement not information as it was never right.
Plus ça change.

Flatpackhamster

I do distinctly remember the change in reporting that occurred in the UK over this. The reason that it changed is that when we in the UK were told we’d have summers 5C warmer than they are now, we all said ‘Brilliant! Longer growing seasons, barbecues, and great weather!” The British are sun monkeys. The scaremongers realised they’d scored an own goal and decided to frighten us with colder weather instead.

3x2

IIRC this theory has been around since the early 90’s and it didn’t make much sense then either.
If the flow slows due to Northern ice melt wouldn’t that cause the North to get colder and hence counteract the melt?

John Finn

Willis Eschenbach (01:14:57) :
Probably worth noting that the Meridional Overturning current is not shutting down …

Quite. I don’t believe the “slowing gulf stream theory” has ever been accepted by mainstream scienctists. Even realclimate dismissed the suggestions in the Times report
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/05/gulf-stream-slowdown/…
The post concludes “Thus while continued monitoring of this key climatic area is clearly warranted, the imminent chilling of the Europe is a ways off yet.”

Martin Brumby

There really should be a ban on scary predictions of what “could” happen.
But the biggest laugh is the fact that hard-pressed UK taxpayers are paying real money for the comfortable salaries and index-linked pensions of these “academics” and civil “servants”.
If they want to do something to help the environment they should be provided with plastic sacks and told to go and pick up litter.

Back in the days I believed their nonsense I listened to an academic giving a lecture about the way the gulf stream disappearing would make the UK as cold as the same latitude on the West of the Atlantic.
But remembering my school boy geography (before global warmers rewrote the text books), I remembered being told that the ocean currents were driven along by the trade winds, and sure enough if you look at the East and West of the Pacific, you find roughly the same temperature difference as teh E-W Atlantic.
So, expected to be told that “yes trade winds played a part … not all the temperature difference will disappear”, I engaged the academic after the lecture.
Their response: “never heard of that!” Never heard of that The guy had not even bothered to check whether the Pacific also had temperature differences, they hadn’t bothered to check that the Gulf Stream and North Atlantic Drift have nothing at all to do with the conditions in the Artic ocean, and not only was his terminology all to pot, he simply hadn’t a clue what he was talking about when he said the Gulf (of mexico) current would be turned off by melting ice in the Artic.
Using school-boy geography, I’ve worked out that this whole effect is a small current that goes up between Shetland and iceland which is insignificant in comparison with the bulk North Atlantic Drift current that brings warm water to the North Atlantic. I think it is 1% of something, and whilst it may significantly affect the temperature in Shetland/Iceland and Norway, I suspect the effect would be almost unnoticeable except to a few climate nerds in England!

Philip Mulholland

Steve
Here is a Google Translate link to Anton Uriate’s blog post of 12 March 2010, for the 2009-10 European winter season just ended, titled
Invierno récord
“In southern Europe, the most notable feature has been the rain. In Spain most of the rainfall total is more than twice the average.”

Purakanui

‘the currents that keep Britain at least 5C (40F) warmer than it should be,’
Not quite, that’s the rough conversion for temperatures recorded, not the conversion for degrees C into degrees F.

Mike McMillan

Global Warming will cause the Greenland ice cap to melt which, when combined with increased rainfall at high latitudes, will potentially disrupt the THC by adding freshwater and decreasing sea water salinity in the North Atlantic….
The Eemian interglacial is recorded in the Greenland ice cap. Since the Eemian was around 2°C warmer than present day for a couple thousand years and the ice cap didn’t melt, I think we still got a chance. Of course, the Eemian may have been a local phenomenon.

I don’t wish to look picky – a wee bit pedantic perhaps, but we British folks call it either Britain, Great Britain, or the United Kingdom.
I get tired of seeing the UK get called “England” by those in the USA 🙂
My country – Scotland – is there too y’know 🙂
Regards.

Cold Englishman

In my 70th year, I have known the 12 foot snowdrifts of 1947, with the following floods, the 3 months of very hard winter of 1963. I enjoyed the 1976 long hot summer, and other assorted anomalies.
Most of these extreme events occured when our current forecasters were still in short pants, and the dire predictions which keep coming are largely because of an apallingly lazy media, who simply print press releases without even a cursory check. Consider the AR4 scandal with all those ‘peer reviewed’ papers written by advocacy groups.
Gaia refuses to be bullied into warming up, though most of us here in UK could do with a bit of it right now, but the MET office says it is going to snow again this week.

I think you should be more clear on your use England; do you mean England the country or Britain the island?
Unlike England the country, Scotland always has had a revolving climate; in places the weather can change dramatically within minutes and you can have ‘four seasons in one day’. And there are plenty of stories about tourists wandering around Ben Nevis in t-shirts and suddenly deciding to take a walk up the mountain as it was a ‘nice day’ only to find blizzards and snow storms as they progress up the mountain. A lot of the time in Scotland the weather is always changing as opposed to always raining in England.

Louis Hissink

Basically they have their geophysics wrong.

R. de Haan

The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, part of the global ocean conveyor belt that helps regulate climate around the North Atlantic, show no significant slowing over the past 15 years. The data suggest the circulation may have even sped up slightly in the recent past.
http://www.heliogenic.net/2010/03/26/agw-climate-models-blow-another-prediction/

Louis Hissink

Steve,
One interesting observation is the close association of cloud cover with the UK landmass.
What caused that?

artwest

Before the Scots, Welsh etc, start complaining, England is only part of the UK/Britain/British Isles.

ad

Why not try and contact some of the researchers involved and try them, and their predictions, to account? Just for the record.

Bruce M. W. Albert, Ph.D., Leverhulme Post-Doc

The press (and Met Office) noise about shut-down of the (thermohaline) North Atlantic Deep Water formation 5 years ago follows in phase-lag a period of widespread publication ca. 1999/2000 of Quaternary evidence (Globally, if not hemispherically) indicative of just such a shut-down at the start of the Younger Dryas (YD), 12.7 KYBP (calibrated and absolute, ca. 10,800 in radiocarbon). The actual mechanism 12,700 years ago might have involved a catastrophic release of melt-water from a mega-lake in Central Canada into Huddon Bay, following a warmish (inter-stadial) period, perturbing the deep water formation off the N. Labrador coast (thermohaline circulation itself is based on density characteristics of salty vs. less salty and warm vs. cold water, and is a major driver today of the Gulf Stream towards the UK, it’s intensity probablt varies also in tandem with North Atlantic [NAO] as well as Arctic Oscillation [AO] indices).
This 5-year lag is typical of inter-disciplinary communication lag, obviously misapplied, due to shoddy scientific standards, to potential outcomes of then (2005) imagined warming of recent times. This shoddiness is of course typical of many historical cases of political and economic abuse of science. Events surrounding the weak AGW hypothesis are not unique this way. What AGW has done that is quite unique is to forcibly divorce an entire subdiscipline (Quaternary Studies) from its proper role in the test of the hypothesis (in the ‘unprecedented warming test’, for example). I too noticed this mis-application of Quaternary Studies notions following the y 2000 YD spate 5 years ago, but did not really appreciate the why until about 5 months ago (peak time at this web-site).
BMWA, PhD., PDRA, Durham U., UK

Bruce M. W. Albert, Ph.D., Leverhulme Post-Doc

HUDSON (not Huddon!) Bay

John Barrett

I thought that the Atlantic Conveyor was sunk by an Exocet off the Falklands in 1982.

NIcL

That island you are showing is Great Britain ( part of the United Kingdom).
England is just a little bit of it – it is like saying Mexico when one means the whole of North America.

Big subject – the thermohaline circulation (THC) – and in its Atlantic manifestion – the MOC – this phenomenon is implicated in the switches in earlier climate cycles, like the ends of inter-glacials.
Check out Predictability? With a Pinch of Salt please.. Part One

melinspain

Cold water sinks….

Allan M

I’m sorry there’s no place to vote for a long, year round, succession of warm summer days, with a slight breeze and fluffy white clouds and blue sky, and babbling brooks, and a steam train chugging through the landscape billowing out white vapour, and an orchestra in the background playing Coronation Scot by Vivian Ellis.
It maybe wouldn’t fit in the box. But if it did, we could make a real difference, if Flash Gordon and his pet Milipede noticed.

Allan J

5C warmer is about 9F warmer; not 40F warmer. Somebody apparently got confused by the fact that a temperature of 5C is about equal to a temperature of about 40F.

timheyes

Everyone should vote. We all know that climate is determined by consensus!
/sarc

rbateman

Duly noted, Willis. The Meridonal Overturning current is not shutting down because
1.) Greenland isn’t melting.
2.) AGW is a bad-breath theory.
3. Supercomputers are no better than the highbrows stuffing monkeyfingered data in one end and collecting the monthly monkeyclimate reports spit out the other end.

Slabadang

Madness!
Total hedge of any climate or weather change is what IPCC loons is creating.
Nothing adds up and everything is contradictive.
Please someone!! Release us from this IPCC madness!!

mark

i predict that in 5 years time britain will be saturated by water falling from the sky. this once proud capital of empire will be completely annexed by the colour grey. and the economy of this huge island will stagnate and centre largely around package holidays.
can i have a grant?

Jacob

Post-structuralism has managed to deliver a bunch of pseudoscientific bastards right at the doorstep of an unsuspecting public. What’s really remarkable is that the educational system in Europe and the US has gotten so infested by relativistic ideals that all independence of ideology – be it religion, be it leftist extremism – has been thrown overboard. Students have been microwaved into believing all and any superstitious views that MSM tell them about drowning polar bears, disappearing glaciers, the Earth’s climate simulating a suicidal barbecue party, West Side Highway a.k.a. Henry Hudson Parkway under water by 2008 etc etc.
But I believe that this game’s over now. The IPCC will be dismantled and buried, Pachauri will be sacked, and all the ideological “climate researchers” of that brand will have to start thinking about getting themselves a life after the climate…
One of the guests at the “UK- based” Fawlty Towers comedy TV series once made the following summing-it-all-up remark to Basil the “manager”:
“GREAT FUN!”
Well, that’s all I can say, too, about the Hansen-Gore-Pachauri climate circus. Let’s hope the alarmists don’t get it into their heads to turn to the LHC at CERN cause someone may get hurt…

kagiso

We have had two extended periods of winter blocking highs in two years, little ice-age here we come.

Veronica (England)

We must be entering a Mournful Minimum.